Fahad Mustafa is a Pakistani celebrity who defines the term ‘influencer’ in the real sense of the word. He is not just a brilliant actor who chooses to do thought-provoking films for the most part and give films that influence the box office ratings, but also conducts a massively popular TV game show Jeeto Pakistan which has following in every part of the country. That’s not it; the star runs the most successful production house — Big Bang Entertainment — which is giving hits after hits, especially in 2020.
In an exclusive chat with Something Haute recently, we got to ask Fahad what he thinks of his status of influencing millions of minds with his content (what he produces as well as what he acts in), how he handles criticism on his projects and the recent bans imposed on them and much more. Here are some excerpts from the interview:
You have given the biggest hits of 2020 as a producer (Ishqiya, Jalan, Nand), despite a pandemic and much criticism on the projects. Your thoughts?
“The pandemic stopped everything in the industry, yet I finished the shoots of my dramas under strict SOPs where people were working in PPT suits but It was necessary because we have to take responsibility of a lot of people whose livelihood is this profession. I am grateful to God that I have received such good response for all of these projects and I know that there is no way that we can control criticism. Nowadays, everything is up for judgement and it is out of my hands. The success, itself, is a testament to the fact that people are watching them; I have not forced you to watch it at gunpoint, the audience is choosing it themselves,” he said adding that he loves Jalan and Nand.
Do you believe that content on TV has an impact in the society and then should we be cautious about what we subjects are we showing on screen?
“I think the bigger problem is our cell phones; they are in everyone’s hand and everyone has an access to everything these days. We can either put a fair warning or start rating system that this is PG 13 or PG 18 etc. Otherwise, it is impossible to control viewership nowadays; that is the relevant issue here. As a producer, there are hundreds of restrictions on us that we cannot show these subjects; now we’re only left with a handful which are about familial issues, domestic violence, romances or a few social stigmas. I believe TV is meant to entertain, let’s not turn it into a school,” Fahad emphasized.
What do you see our drama and film industry in 10 years?
“Our film industry recently stepped out of that ‘revival’ phase which we all talk about. We worked hard to make it happen and people were interested in making films and putting money in it and then unfortunately, this pandemic took everything back to square one. It is disheartening when you have films ready for screening but you just cannot release them. I have not produced a film as of yet because I don’t consider it a business (in Pakistan). As for the drama industry, I feel it is here to stay and if something is functional then let it grow. I also don’t think there is much scope for web in Pakistan because we don’t have laws. It is good for those who have nothing to loose and have no stakes in it like YouTubers,” he said.
Watch the full interview here to find out more about Quaid-e-Azam Zindabad, his experience of working or dancing with Mahira and why he doesn’t do dramas any more: